Resume Revamp: How to Turn Your Duties into Accomplishments


You often hear that your resume should list your accomplishments, not your job duties. And it’s true—accomplishment statements are the best way to showcase the amazing things you’ve done at your past jobs, plus show prospective employers what you can do for them. Your list of weekly assignments? Not so much.

So why do the majority of resumes out there still look like job descriptions? Well, because turning job duties into accomplishments is a tough concept to grasp. But once you get it—I promise, you’ll have smooth sailing in your resume-writing future. So grab your resume, and sit down with these step-by-step guide to ditching the duties and making those bullet points sing your praises.

1. Know the Difference

Plain and simple, a duty describes what you did and an accomplishment describes how well you did it. For example, “planned events” would be considered a job duty, whereas “raised N50,000,000 by selling out tickets to a 200-person charity event” is an accomplishment.

Why is this so important? You want to tell the person reading your resume something she doesn’t already know. For the most part, hiring managers will understand what duties are associated with your job titles. It’s common knowledge that, for example, an Executive Assistant will answer phones, manage files, and provide customer service. So, putting those statements as bullets on your resume only uses up valuable space. On the other hand, by including accomplishments, you paint a picture of your abilities—one that will sell yourself.

So now that you understand the difference, how do you make the change?

2. Make a List

Get started by compiling a list of all the things that set you apart. For each of the positions on your resume, ask yourself the following:

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